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RealTime IT News

Ericsson Addresses Online Customer Service

Ericsson has launched Upfront Solutions in Australia, the company's Internet customer service solution which combines Internet technology with existing call centre infrastructure.

The solution allows organisations to interact with customers through text chat, telephone, Voice Over IP (VoIP) and email.

The solution is divided into a number of components. The Automated Upfront Virtual Agent manages the self-service side of the solution, generating responses to common and repetitive inquiries.

The human support component is handled by Upfront Live, which enables customer service representatives to interact with customers.

Upfront Professional Services offers consultancy and training in the areas of building and maintaining a knowledge base, and systems integration with CRM systems.

Users do not require any special software to interact with Upfront. They simply type in queries in natural language, directly to their browsers. If interaction with a human is required, users can escalate their enquiry to text chat or voice communication.

Tim Courtright, business leader of Upfront Solutions, said the solution was conceived in response to "strong market demand for a customer service solution that effectively combines the benefits of the traditional call centre with the convenience and cost-effectiveness of Web-based customer self-service".

"It is now universally accepted that Internet Customer Service plays a critical role in the success on any online business. With the competition 'just a click away', the ability to predict and satisfy customer needs is increasingly seen as the key to attracting customers, and just as importantly, retaining them," he said.

Upfront Solutions will operate as a new business group of Ericsson and will draw on Ericsson's experience and research and development investment in Internet Protocol technology.